How to resolve property damage Disputes

Damages to a rented property can cause headache for both landlords and tenants. If you are a tenant, you are the one who has to report any property damage to the landlord or the real estate agency. If you do, your landlord and you can come to conclusion what exactly has happened and whether or not you are one liable for it. Almost half of the security deposits are given back with agreed deductions which is why it is of a great importance that your landlord and you reach an agreement, beneficial for both parties of the deal. It has to be discussed how repairs will be arranged and how paid for.

One of the best ways to resolve a property damage dispute is to have a detailed inventory of the property’s condition from your first visit, along with a photographic evidence. If your landlord and you together make an inventory which describes the accurate state of the house or flat when you move in, then it will be a lot easier for you to resolve whether you are the one who caused the damage, or whether is the wear and tear.

All you need to do is cite the condition of the property including doors, windows, floors, carpeted areas, walls, furniture, furnishings, etc. Do not neglect this because it may turn out to be crucial when it pertains to resolving property damage disputes. Both parties have to be acknowledged of the current condition of the property.

Your landlord and you should come up with what is considered wear and tear and what is considered a property damage. It is vital to outline what are the terms under which the tenant is expected to cover the damage. Both parties have to be provided with tenancy agreement.

If, for one reason or another, you have caused damages to the rented property and repairs are necessary, there is a process which has to be followed by both landlord and tenant so that the landlord will be given a compensation while the tenant can keep part of the deposit.


If you are a tenant, you are expected to report any caused damages to the property the moment they occur. By reporting to the landlord, he or she may repair these damages within a couple of hours and this way, prevent them from worsening.

You can report the problem by phone or sending an email. Once you have informed the landlord, make sure to keep copies of the emails and phone calls. Furthermore, do not forget to take photos of the lodging when you move in and when the damage occurs so that you can have evidence.

Our heartfelt advice is to document each and every one of the methods which your landlord uses to make the repairs. If somehow you cannot reach an agreement upon a reasonable deduction of the security deposit, then you will be able to display the evidence.


The landlord is expected to inform you about any repairs that took place in the property. It is in your right to know all the details about the repairs, including the price of the repair, invoices and receipts, of course. This way you will know what amount of money will be deducted from the deposit and when you are supposed to receive it. It is the landlord’s duty to report any expenses incurred in terms of repairs being done.

In case the tenant is thought to have caused damages to the rented property and has not reported to the landlord, or refused to cover the expanses for the repair, the disputes can still be resolved. In such situation, a difference between damage and ‘natural wear and tear’ has to be made.

The tenant cannot be charged additionally or have money deducted from the security deposit if the damage occurs post vacating the residence or is a result of the home being dwellt in. For instance, if the floor of the residence is lightly scratched at the end of lease, the tenant could not be forced to pay for causing the damage.

A serious damage is regarded to be some problem which could have been prevented or avoided, such as a broken wardrobe or burn in the carpeting or curtains. Each tenancy agreement has a clause that concerns wear and tear. For example, it might say “Every tenant shall keep the level of cleanliness high and take proper care of the property. The property is expected to be found as clean and hygienic as it was when the tenant moves in, excluding wear and tear”.

If the landlord and tenant cannot reach an agreement in regards to the state of the rented property and the price of any replacements or repairs, then an independent adjudicator comes to the rescue. The decision of this third party cannot be subjected.